Digital futures for bilingual books

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


    In dozens of Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory, hundreds of books in Indigenous Australian languages were produced for use in classrooms, with illustrations by local artists, usually published on site and with a small local distribution. The production of these resources involved a blending of Indigenous knowledges with Western technologies as traditional stories were recorded and transcribed, then printed on paper, and used for developing text literacy in local languages. This brought previously oral-only stories into a written mode, enabling a different means of transmission and a different degree of permanence, as well as a radical redefinition of text and representation.
    In the digital era, this blending of knowledges and technologies continues, as ancient stories and practices take on new life in digital contexts. In both the digitisation of these existing resources, and the development of new digital materials, Indigenous and Western practices are finding common ground and again enabling new means of transmission and degrees of permanence, as well as a return to more traditional modes of knowledge production.
    The move away from bilingual education programs put at risk these irreplaceable materials. The Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages project represents an attempt to both preserve and reactivate these stories by digitising the materials and storing them online. Access to the archive is intended to engage users of various types – scholars, teachers, students, community members – with the stories and storytellers, and with the knowledge and language represented in these online texts.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationHistory of bilingual education in the Northern Territory
    Subtitle of host publicationPeople, programs and policies.
    EditorsBrian Devlin, Samantha Disbray, Nancy Devlin
    Place of PublicationSingapore
    Number of pages7
    ISBN (Electronic)9789811020780
    ISBN (Print)9789811020766
    Publication statusPublished - 2017

    Publication series

    NameLanguage Policy


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